Pharmacy Technician Course
Pharmacy technology is an essential component of the healthcare delivery system. And now with new drug stores popping up in growing urban and suburban areas (and online), plus new medications hitting the market, properly trained pharmacy technicians could look forward to busy careers. Because of this, good job opportunities are expected for full-time and part-time pharmacy technicians with formal training.
Our distance learning course for aspiring pharmacy technicians can teach you practical techniques and skills. Soon, you could be learning the kind of knowledge and skills sought out by retail pharmacies, clinics, hospitals, HMOs, or pharmaceutical manufacturing firms. Our courses can teach you how to:
- Receive prescriptions from doctors and hospitals.
- Prepare prescriptions for patients.
- Verify insurance and prescription information.
- Assist the pharmacist with everyday duties.
With our home study pharmacy technician course you could gain industry knowledge and job-specific skills needed to succeed in this challenging environment. So get started today by requesting more information.
- Penn Foster Career School
- University of Florida
- Working Professional Doctor of Pharmacy
A pharmacy technician is someone who works alongside a licensed pharmacist to ensure that each patient gets the proper medication that was prescribed to him or her. In this role, you may work in a hospital, drug store, retail pharmacy, clinic pharmacy or for a mail order prescription drug service. In a typical workday as a pharmacy technician, you will take prescriptions from patients in person, through an internal computer system, by mail or over the telephone.
Before the prescription can be dispensed to the patient, you must count out the precise number of pills that go into the bottle. Some prescriptions will also come in the form of a powder, compound or a liquid. It is vital that the patient has been screened for drug allergies and the pharmacist knows what other drugs he or she is taking. This will prevent an accidental drug interaction that could be harmful. Once the prescription is prepared, you are responsible for labeling it and obtaining authorization from the patient's insurance company. You will also help to resolve insurance discrepancies, collect co-payments and counsel the patient on the proper use of the medication.
What Type of Education is Necessary to Become a Pharmacy Technician?
Since the job of pharmacy technician is an entry-level one, the training required is relatively short compared to other medical careers. Certificate programs are the most typical type of career training required to become a pharmacy technician, with programs typically ranging from three months to one year. You can find a pharmacy technician certificate program at most community and technical colleges. You may also be able to complete a portion of your education over the Internet, although the hands-on laboratory portion of pharmacy technician training programs is usually the longest.
There are also two-year associate degree programs available for pharmacy technician training purposes. If you choose to earn an associate's degree, approximately one-half of your coursework will focus on pharmacy technician training and the other half will consist of liberal arts curriculum. If you ever decide to attend a four-year college, the credits you earn towards your associate's degree will most likely be transferable. People who plan to advance their careers in the medical field may do best with a broader educational background
What is the Job Outlook and Typical Pay for Pharmacy Technicians?
Due to the aging population, the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) estimates a 32 percent annual job growth rate for skilled pharmacy technicians. With the elderly population accounting for the highest percentage of prescription drug users, pharmacy technicians are needed to help ensure they get the medication they need. Also, the growing field of pharmaceutical research is responsible for getting a large number of new drugs patented each year. When people have more medication options available to them, they are more willing to see their doctors and have new prescriptions filled. This couldn't happen without the assistance of experienced pharmacy technicians. The 32 percent annual growth rate is anticipated through at least 2020.
The BLS estimated the median annual wage for pharmacy technicians to be $28,000 in 2010. People who earned up to $40,000 a year as pharmacy technicians were most often employed by hospitals. Pharmacy technicians working in retail settings typically had the lowest reported annually salaries.